New England Complex 
Systems Institute

Cambridge, MA

Raffaele Calabretta

Permanent Researcher
Laboratory of Autonomous Robotics and Artificial Life
Institute of Cognitive Sciences and Technologies 
National Research Council of Italy (Cnr)

Via S. Martino della Battaglia, 44 00185  Rome, Italy
 Tel.: ++39-06-44595 227 Fax: +39-06-44595 243












Associate Professor

International Telematic University UniNettuno

Rome, Italy


Welcome to my Home Page! I am a permanent researcher of the Institute of Cognitive Sciences and Technologies (former Institute of Psychology) of the 
Italian National Research Council in Rome
. I am also an Associate Professor of Psychology of Communication (International Telematic University 
and an affiliate of the New England Complex Systems Institute (Cambridge, MA). I collaborate regularly with the Stanford University 
Department of Communication and the Yale University Department of Psychology.

I work in a relatively new research field, which is named Artificial Life. The main goal of this kind of research is the simulation and synthesis of living 
systems into a computer in order to understand "life as it is" and "life as it could be" (Langton, 1989). A few years ago I started a collaboration with 
evolutionary biologists (
Gunter Wagner, Riccardo Galbiati) and cognitive scientists (Domenico Parisi, Stefano Nolfi, Frank Keil, Andrea Di 
Ferdinando), and  my current interest is in simulating evolution of body and brain/mind modularity in complex organisms by means of artificial neural 
networks and genetic algorithms (Calabretta & Neirotti, 2015; Calabretta, Di Ferdinando, Parisi & Keil, 2008; Calabretta, 2007
Calabretta, Di Ferdinando & Parisi, 2004). (Neural networks are computational models of the brain which controls organisms' behavior; genetic 
algorithms are computational models of Darwinian evolution.)

My research activity also concerns the utilization of  Artificial Life simulations and software for the development of multimedia applications in the field of 
education (Calabretta, 1996; in Italian).
For several years I had been a Professor of Educational Technologies at the University of L'Aquila Faculty of 
Educational Science and I collaborate with Rai Educational. Another research interest is the use of experimental narrative as educational tool: in 2006
published a
science-in-fiction novel on emotions called Il film delle emozioni (second edition, Gaffi Editore, Rome; in Italian; see Calabretta, 2010). 

My recent research interest is focused on intra-party democracy: I have developed a new intra-party deliberative and participatory decision-making 
, named "Doparie" (Calabretta, 2011; Klein, Spada & Calabretta, 2012; Iandoli et al., 2017; see proposal's press page, in Italian). In 2009 
I started a collaboration with Paolo Spada, an expert in democratic innovations, and in 2012 with James S. Fishkin (Fishkin & Calabretta, 2012), who 
developed the idea of Deliberative Polling and is the Director of the Stanford University Center for Deliberative Democracy.



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